Debt Ceiling One-Act

Scene: The Oval Office of The White House
Time: Midnight, Sunday, August 1st?

Barack Obama, President of The United States (PR)
Representative John Boehner, Speaker of The House (JB)

The Devil (DEV) (DEV is visible only to PR and JB as a ten foot tall, steaming, blood-red monster, with horns, cloven hooves and a tail. To anyone else who might accidentally observe him, he appears to be Lloyd Blankfein, CEO of Goldman Sachs).


PR- (heaving a deep sigh, leaning back in his chair): ?God-
Damn! That took long enough. I?m wiped out.?

JB- (downing a large glass of straight scotch): ?Fuckin? tell
me about it! You don?t have deal with those loony tea-
party assholes?.

PR- ?Yeah, well?you try handling those whiny liberal pains-
in-the-ass.? (leans forward)? ?OK, now look John. This
is a done deal right? And I just want to say-

(JB interrupts, lowers his voice to a whisper)??Whoa,
whoa?what about him? (nodding his head in the
direction of DEV).

PR (resuming)? ?Oh, Lloyd? He?s just hear to witness the
final deal?You know we agreed he had to have last
say?just like he has on everything since I was

JB ?I know he cleared it, but still, I didn?t expect him to
actually be here. I mean, the smell alone??

PR ?Now don?t be ungrateful, John, did you forget how we
both got our jobs? I mean, both parties have been
working with on this with him for years now.?

(holds up his right index finger)

?OK, now, between you and me?just so we have our
priorities straight before we go out and deal with the
press? ?We agreed, the most important thing?
more important than all this default, budget bullshit, is
I get to be re-elected; then, you get to stay Majority
leader for several more terms? And Lloyd there
(nods at DEV), gets final say on all foreign and
domestic policy decisions and alll spending bills? We
straight on that?

JB (downing another straight scotch)? ?Sounds right?
But how do we handle the transfer of the Social
Security Trust Fund to Goldman Sachs and the
elimination of Medicare? I mean, they?re all morons,
but there?s got to be some reaction.?

PR (waving his hand in dismissal). ?C?mon John, don?t go
pussy on me here? Look- you and me, we?re
fixed for life, right? ?Old people, sick people, poor
people. I mean, who really gives a shit, right??

JB ?True that.? ?And if the voters (at the mention of the
word ?voters?, PR and JB break into hysterical
laughter. JB snorts scotch through his nose. Finally,
PR stops laughing and wipes tears from his eyes)?

PR ?Oh I love it. I fuckin? love it. The ?voters?. You let me
handle the voters, John. I?ll give em a little ?hope and
change??they?ll eat it right up, as usual.

JB ?Yeah, and I?ll spout some crap about Liberty and The
Founders (stands, adjusts his tie, pops a couple of
tic-tacs in his mouth? PR stands and brushes his
suit). ?Alright, Mr. President, let?s deal with ?the
press? (they both chuckle).

DEV- (stands to his full ten feet, sulphurous smoke pours
out of his ears?He has a two foot, bright-red erection
and a wide smirk on his face. ?PR and JB turn to look
up at him? In one hand, he is holding out a large
smoking piece of parchment entitled Debt Ceiling Deal;
in the other hand, a black fountain pen, dripping red

PR ?Right John, time to sign.? (Both of them sign the
document. ? PR addresses DEV): ?Thanks a trillion,
Lloyd, we couldn?t have made a deal like this without

(DEV vanishes in a puff of smoking commodity

JB? ?I have to tell you Mr. President, I know it?s only just
good old Lloyd Blankfein, but the old stuff doesn?t
just leave you. I mean, we just signed a deal with the
Devil, for Christ?s sake!?

PR ?But you know John, that?s the beauty part of this
whole scam. We signed a deal with the Devil, but it?s
the country that loses its soul.? ?(takes JB?s arm)
?Let?s go sell this deal to the suckers?.

(Exit?stage Far Right)

– Mike Feder (New York City – August 1, 2011)

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